It’s time again for another Digitize Your Firm webinar – hello everyone, I hope you’re all excited to learn about omni-channel marketing. What is omni-channel marketing? That’s the just the question we’ll be answering today.
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As with all Digitize Your Firm webinars, this will be recorded for later playback in case you wanted extra time with a certain section or for listening on the go. If you haven’t already, please visit the Weekly Webinar Schedule on our Digitize Your Firm page to check out our past webinars.
Now, let’s go over today’s agenda.
We’re going to start today by answering the question: “What is omni-channel marketing”, then discuss how it compares to multi-channel marketing. We’re even going to tell you how you can integrate omni-channel communications into your existing strategy before doing our review and teasing next week’s topic.
Sound good? Let’s get into it.
What is Omni-channel Marketing?
Do you know about omni-channel marketing?
When you first hear the term omni-channel, you may be think, “Great, yet another marketing buzzword,” and you would be right. However, it is an accurate term for a relatively new way of marketing that appeals to all customers through all marketing channels.
But, isn’t omni-channel the same thing as multi-channel?
Multi-channel marketing uses various marketing channels such as email, SMS, and voice as separate entities geared toward those who prefer to use only that specific method of communication. Omni-channel marketing takes these different marketing approaches and uses them in a way where they work symbiotically with each other to facilitate how consumers can cross over the different mediums, sometimes multiple times during a single transaction.
Omni-channel marketing is becoming more and more widespread in usage by businesses and organizations in an effort to streamline their processes and be as accessible as possible for clients and customers. In this webinar, we will discuss the benefits of an omni-channel marketing approach and why your business should consider this strategy.
So – what exactly is the benefit of having an omni-channel strategy?
Omni-channel marketing serves to make sure that a customer is able to have the same type of experience with your business no matter what kind of channel they decide to use – whether it be contacting you through your website on their desktop computer, tablet, or mobile, or even if they decide to visit your business in person. The aim of an omni-channel approach is to provide a sense of cohesion across all mediums with seamless transitions from one platform to the next.
But, what’s so great about having an omni-channel marketing strategy?
Having a fully integrated system enabling you to talk to your clients, no matter the channel, can only be a good thing for your business. And, the ability to provide the same quality of service through each of these channels helps endear your customers to your particular brand, thus increasing its value.
Omni-channel vs. Multi-channel marketing
Omni-channel marketing takes on more of a user-centric approach to marketing rather than focusing on the back-end of a multi-channel platform. Omni-channel essentially is a byproduct of how you use a multi-channel platform.
By simply using a multi-channel platform with all these different marketing and communication channels to connect with people in their preferred method, you will expand your customer base, increase your sales, and improve your overall ROI. By taking this approach, customers who prefer face-to-face communication will still visit your establishment in person, while those who prefer telephone calls or emails will continue to contact you via these channels.
However, more and more these days, clients are increasingly likely to utilize the full gamut of channels available to them. Some will reach out via your website live chat, and then proceed to call you on your support line. If they are buying an item off your website, they may browse on their mobile phone and then sign in on their laptop to complete their purchase.
This is omni-channel marketing and communication.
The ease with which they are able to do this and receive a consistent level of service contributes to how successful your omni-channel strategy is. The more facilitated it is, the better the customer’s experience, which means the higher your customer satisfaction rating.
Integrating Omni-channel Communications into Your Strategy
As was previously mentioned, omni-channel marketing is basically a result of how you have put your multi-channel platform into practice. If you are simply using your platform as a means of ensuring some level of communication with your clients is possible via multiple mediums, then your business is not taking advantage of the omni-channel approach.
To make use of the omni-channel marketing possibilities available, your company can take what you know from your multi-channel marketing and push it further by optimizing your platform so that each of the channels easily integrates with the others. This can be done in an effort to streamline the user experience.
The first steps you can take in order to integrate your multi-channel platform with an omni-channel marketing strategy would be to make all your platform channels consistent across the board. Through the use of the same colors, signatures, and style of branding, for starters, you should begin to be able to provide the same level of customer experience on all mediums of your platform, creating a seamless transition from one to the next. It shouldn’t matter whether your customers contact you via email, SMS, or even Facebook, they should be able to benefit from quick response times and quality information.
You may think that in order to have the resources to accomplish this level of service, you will have to hire and pay additional personnel whose sole responsibility is managing the queries coming from your various channels. However, with the help of a marketing automation platform, this process can be facilitated to help increase efficiency and help your company make the most of omni-channel marketing.
A marketing automation platform can allow your business to facilitate omni-channel marketing endeavors by automating your communications with clients and customers so you do not have to spend as much time and effort managing all your different communication channels.
Through such a platform, you can write your responses in advance and schedule them to send automatically whenever a customer reaches out via a particular medium. The benefit of being able to pre-write your responses is that you are able to maintain a consistent voice across all your channels and your customers benefit from having one single voice that gives them one, unified answer and not a bunch of voices with a bunch of different opinions.
A marketing automation platform can also benefit an omni-channel marketing strategy by providing your business with the ability to track the success of each of your campaigns across all of your channels and determine which ones customers are responding to and which ones may need improvement.
This can be done through web tracking software and tracking links. By creating tracking links and placing them on your website, in your emails, and even your SMS messages, every time someone interacts with them, the data gets collected and compiled into reports which you can then use to measure the return of each channel and decide where to focus your resources.
Now, let’s review.
1. Omni-channel communication, while it may sound like a buzzword, refers to the ability for your audience, clients, customers, and more to interaction with you across multiple platforms while getting the same experience. It gives a sense of cohesion to your business while also providing the same quality of service regardless of the channel someone chooses to engage with your organization.
2. When it comes down to it, omni-channel marketing and multi-channel marketing are two sides of the same coin – the difference is accessibility you provide your contacts and the effort you put into the back-end of your marketing platform. People want multiple channels they can use to engage organizations and brands, such as website chat, social media, calling in, emailing and more.
If you’re using these channels to market your products and services, but not for customer interaction and engagement, your business is missing out.
3. Finally, one of the best ways to integrate omni-channel communication into your existing web strategy, is to use marketing platforms that allow to oversee as many channels as possible. Ensure that your branding, logos, font, is the same across the board and prepare responses and options for your channels for when people reach out – or if you’re using an automation platform, create campaigns that respond according or alert a customer service representative.
Next week we’ll explore transactional emails, what you should know, and how to get started.Albums: Digitize Your Firm